I last blogged on the subject of the budget on 17th September signposting readers to a presentation made by the City Treasurer to full Council. Anyone who followed the link will not have been surprised by this week's press coverage of next years budget options, although the Treasurer's current estimate for the year after next, 2016/7, has improved believe it or not, by around £10m.

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Rolling Stock

A last word on devolution and Mayors, at least for the time being, not least to respond to a couple of questions that have been asked. The words elected Mayor have taken on a negative connotation in much of the local government world, largely I think because of successive governments attempts to foist them on us with no additional powers or resources.

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New Powers to Greater Manchester

A rather longer blog than usual. Yesterday Greater Manchester Leaders signed an agreement with central government for the biggest transfer of power from central to local any of us will have ever witnessed, taking powers from a remote and inefficient Whitehall so that more decisions effecting Greater Manchester are taken in Greater Manchester by local elected representatives. I'm not going to comment further today though may do later in the week. For the time being I leave you with a summary of the agreement set out below.

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